|Height:||182 cm (5' 12'')|
|Birth Day:||May 8, 1940|
|Death Date:||Dec 31, 1985 (age 45)|
|Birth Place:||Teaneck, United States|
Singer, songwriter, and musician who was the son of Ozzie and Harriet Nelson. He starred on the series The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet with his family members. He was also nominated for a Golden Globe for his appearance in Rio Bravo.
|#1||David Nelson||Brother||$2 Million||N/A||74||Actor|
|#2||Tracy Nelson||Daughter||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||57||Actor|
|#3||Ozzie Nelson||Father||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||69||Actor|
|#4||Kristin Nelson||Former spouse||$6 Million||N/A||75||Actor|
|#5||Remington Elizabeth Moses||Granddaughter||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#6||Elijah Nelson Clark||Grandson||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#7||Harriet Nelson||Mother||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||85||Actor|
|#8||Daniel Blair Nelson||Nephew||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#10||Eric Jude Crewe||Son||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|#11||Matthew Nelson||Son||$3 Million||N/A||N/A||Rock Stars|
|#12||Gunnar Nelson||Son||$3 Million||N/A||32||MMA|
|#13||Sam Nelson||Son||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||66||Actor|
|#14||Tom Harmon||$1 Million (Approx.)||N/A||70||Football Player|
As per our current Database, Ricky Nelson died on Dec 31, 1985 (age 45).
|Height||Weight||Hair Colour||Eye Colour||Blood Type||Tattoo(s)|
|182 cm (5' 12'')||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
He was born Eric Hilliard Nelson and was later nicknamed Ricky. He had such severe asthma as a child, forcing him to sleep with a vaporizer.
Nelson was born on May 8, 1940, in Teaneck, New Jersey. He was the second son of entertainment couple Harriet Hilliard Nelson (born Peggy Lou Snyder; July 18, 1909 – October 2, 1994) and Ozzie Nelson (March 20, 1906 – June 3, 1975). His father Ozzie was of half Swedish descent. The Nelsons' older son was actor David Nelson (October 24, 1936 – January 11, 2011).
Harriet, normally the vocalist for Ozzie's band, remained in Englewood, New Jersey, with her newborn and toddler. Meanwhile, bandleader Ozzie toured with the Nelson orchestra. The Nelsons bought a two-story colonial house in Tenafly, New Jersey, and six months after the purchase, moved with son David to Hollywood, where Ozzie and Harriet were slated to appear in the 1941–42 season of Red Skelton's The Raleigh Cigarette Hour; Ricky remained in Tenafly in the care of his paternal grandmother. In November 1941, the Nelsons bought what would become their permanent home: a green and white, two-story, Cape Cod colonial home at 1822 Camino Palmero in Los Angeles. Ricky joined his parents and brother in Los Angeles in 1942.
Ricky was a small and insecure child who suffered from severe asthma. At night, his sleep was eased with a vaporizer emitting tincture of evergreen. He was described by Red Skelton's producer John Guedel as "an odd little kid," likable, shy, introspective, mysterious, and inscrutable. When Skelton was drafted in 1944, Guedel crafted the radio sitcom The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet for Ricky's parents. The show debuted on Sunday, October 8, 1944, to favorable reviews. Ozzie eventually became head writer for the show and based episodes on the fraternal exploits and enmity of his sons. The Nelson boys were first played in the radio series by professional child actors until twelve-year-old Dave and eight-year-old Ricky joined the show on February 20, 1949, in the episode "Invitation to Dinner."
In 1952, the Nelsons tested the waters for a television series with the theatrically released film Here Come the Nelsons. The film was a hit, and Ozzie was convinced the family could make the transition from radio's airwaves to television's small screen. On October 3, 1952, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet made its television debut and was broadcast in first run until September 3, 1966, to become one of the longest-running sitcoms in television history.
At age sixteen, he wanted to impress his girlfriend of two years, Diana Osborn(e), who was an Elvis fan and, although he had no record contract at the time, told her that he, too, was going to make a record. With his father's help, he secured a one-record deal with Verve Records, an important jazz label looking for a young and popular personality who could sing or be taught to sing. On March 26, 1957, he recorded the Fats Domino standard "I'm Walkin'" and "A Teenager's Romance" (released in late April 1957 as his first single), and "You're My One and Only Love".
Before the single was released, he made his television rock-and-roll debut on April 10, 1957, singing and playing the drums to "I'm Walkin'" in the Ozzie and Harriet episode "Ricky, the Drummer". About the same time, he made an unpaid public appearance, singing "Blue Moon of Kentucky" with the Four Preps at a Hamilton High School lunch-hour assembly in Los Angeles and was greeted by hordes of screaming teens who had seen the television episode.
"I'm Walkin'" reached No. 4 on Billboard's Best Sellers in Stores chart, and its flip side, "A Teenager's Romance", hit #2. When the television series went on summer break in 1957, Nelson made his first road trip and played four state and county fairs in Ohio and Wisconsin with the Four Preps, who opened and closed for him.
In early summer 1957, Ozzie Nelson pulled his son from Verve after disputes about royalties and signed him to a lucrative five-year deal with Imperial Records that gave him approval over song selection, sleeve artwork, and other production details. Ricky's first Imperial single, "Be-Bop Baby", generated 750,000 advance orders, sold over one million copies, and reached No. 3 on the charts. Nelson's first album, Ricky, was released in October 1957 and hit #1 before the end of the year. Following these successes, Nelson was given a more prominent role on the Ozzie and Harriet show and ended every two or three episodes with a musical number.
From 1957 to 1962, Nelson had 30 Top-40 hits, more than any other artist except Presley (who had 53) and Pat Boone (38). Many of Nelson's early records were double hits with both the A and B sides hitting the Billboard charts.
In 1957, when Nelson was 17, he met and fell in love with Marianne Gaba, who played the role of Ricky's girlfriend in three episodes of Ozzie and Harriet. Nelson and Gaba were too young to entertain a serious relationship, although according to Gaba "we used to neck for hours."
In 1958, Nelson recorded 17-year-old Sharon Sheeley's "Poor Little Fool" for his second album, Ricky Nelson, released in June 1958. Radio airplay brought the tune notice, and Imperial suggested releasing a single, but Nelson opposed the idea, believing a single would diminish EP sales. When a single was released nonetheless, he exercised his contractual right to approve any artwork and vetoed a picture sleeve. On August 4, 1958, "Poor Little Fool" became the #1 single on Billboard's newly instituted Hot 100 singles chart and sold over two million copies.
During 1958 and 1959, Nelson placed twelve hits on the charts in comparison with Elvis Presley's eleven. During these two years, Presley had recorded music only for the movie King Creole, in January and February 1958, before his induction into the U.S. Armed Forces and a brief recording session (consisting of five songs) while on Military Leave four months later. In the summer of 1958, Nelson conducted his first full-scale tour, averaging $5,000 nightly. By 1960, the Ricky Nelson International Fan Club had 9,000 chapters around the world.
On May 8, 1961 (his 21st birthday), he officially modified his recording name from "Ricky Nelson" to "Rick Nelson". His childhood nickname proved hard to shake, especially among the generation who had watched him grow up on "Ozzie and Harriet". Even in the 1980s, when Nelson realized his dream of meeting Carl Perkins, Perkins noted that he and "Ricky" were the last of the "rockabilly breed."
At Christmas 1961, Nelson began dating Kristin Harmon (June 25, 1945 – April 26, 2018), the daughter of football player Tom Harmon and actress Elyse Knox (née Elsie Kornbrath) and the older sister of Kelly and Mark Harmon. The Nelsons and the Harmons had long been friends, and a union between their children held great appeal. Rick and Kris had much in common: quiet dispositions, Hollywood upbringings, and high-powered, domineering fathers.
In 1963, Nelson signed a 20-year contract with Decca Records. After some early successes with the label, most notably 1964's "For You" (#6), Nelson's chart career came to a dramatic halt in the wake of Beatlemania and The British Invasion. However, instead of dropping him, Decca kept him on board.
They married on April 20, 1963. Kris was pregnant, and Rick later described the union as a "shotgun wedding". Nelson, a nonpracticing Protestant, received instruction in Catholicism at the insistence of the bride's parents and signed a pledge to have any children of the union raised in the Catholic faith. Kris Nelson joined the television show as a regular cast member in 1963. They had four children: actress Tracy Kristine Nelson, twin sons Gunnar Eric Nelson and Matthew Gray Nelson who formed the band Nelson, and Sam Hilliard Nelson.
Nelson was the first teen idol to use television to promote hit records. Ozzie Nelson even had the idea to edit footage together to create some of the first music videos. This creative editing can be seen in videos Ozzie produced for "Travelin' Man." Nelson appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1967, but his career by that time was in limbo. He also appeared on other television shows (usually in acting roles). In 1973, he had an acting role in an episode of The Streets of San Francisco. He starred in the episode "A Hand For Sonny Blue" from the 1977 series Quinn Martin's Tales of the Unexpected (known in the United Kingdom as Twist in the Tale). In 1979, he guest-hosted on Saturday Night Live, spoofing his television sitcom image by appearing in a Twilight Zone sendup in which, always trying to go "home," he finds himself among the characters from other 1950s/early 1960s-era sitcoms, Leave It to Beaver, Father Knows Best, Make Room for Daddy, and I Love Lucy.
In the mid-1960s, Nelson began to move towards country music, becoming a pioneer in the country-rock genre. He was one of the early influences of the so-called "California Sound" (which would include singers like Jackson Browne and Linda Ronstadt and bands such as Eagles). Yet Nelson himself did not reach the Top 40 again until 1970, when he recorded Bob Dylan's "She Belongs to Me" with the Stone Canyon Band, featuring Randy Meisner, who in 1971 became a founding member of the Eagles, and former Buckaroo steel guitarist Tom Brumley.
In 1972, Nelson reached the Top 40 one last time with "Garden Party", a song he wrote in disgust after a Richard Nader Oldies Concert at Madison Square Garden where the audience booed, perhaps against some unrelated police action. However, Nelson may have felt that the reason was because he was playing new songs instead of just his old hits. When he performed The Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women", there was booing, said to be against police and not him. He was watching the rest of the performance on a TV monitor backstage until Richard Nader finally convinced Nelson to return to the stage and play his "oldies". He returned to the stage and played his "oldies" and the audience responded with applause, according to Deborah Nader, President of Richard Nader Entertainment. He wanted to record an album featuring original material, but the single was released before the album because Nelson had not completed the entire Garden Party album yet. "Garden Party" reached No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart and was certified as a gold single. The second single released from the album was "Palace Guard" which peaked at #65.
In 1973, MCA Records, whose parent company MCA Inc. had owned American Decca since 1962, ceased the label's operations, and transferred Nelson (and many other Decca artists) to its roster. His comeback was short-lived, and Nelson's band soon resigned. MCA wanted Nelson to have a producer on his next album. A new band was formed by Lindy Goetz, then a promotion person at MCA Records. Nelson's band moved to Aspen and changed their name to "Canyon". Nelson and the new Stone Canyon Band began to tour for the Garden Party album. Nelson still played nightclubs and bars, but he soon advanced to higher-paying venues because of the success of Garden Party.
In 1974, MCA was unsure as to what to do with the former teen idol. Albums like Windfall failed to have an impact. Nelson became an attraction at theme parks like Knott's Berry Farm and Disneyland. He also started appearing in minor roles on television shows.
By 1975, following the birth of their last child, the marriage had deteriorated and a very public, controversial divorce involving both families was covered in the press for several years. In October 1977, Kris filed for divorce and asked for alimony, custody of their four children, and a portion of community property. The couple temporarily resolved their differences, but Kris retained her attorney to pursue a permanent break. Kris wanted Rick to give up music, spend more time at home, and focus on acting, but the family enjoyed a recklessly expensive lifestyle, and Kris's extravagant spending left Rick no choice but to tour relentlessly. The impasse over Rick's career created unpleasantness at home. Kris became an alcoholic and left the children in the care of household help. After years of legal proceedings, they were divorced in December 1982. The divorce was financially devastating for Nelson, with attorneys and accountants taking over $1 million. Years of legal wrangling followed.
In 1980, Nelson met Helen Blair, a part-time model and exotic-animal trainer, in Las Vegas. Within months of their meeting, she became his road companion, and in 1982 she moved in with him. She was the only woman he dated after his divorce.
In 1985, Nelson began a "Comeback tour" with Fats Domino. He put the "y" back on his name and became "Ricky" again. He sang the songs for which he was famous and released a greatest hits album, Ricky Nelson: All My Best. His comeback was cut short when, while on the tour circuit, his plane crashed on New Year's Eve.
Nelson died in a plane crash on December 31, 1985, flying from Guntersville, Alabama, to Dallas, Texas, for a concert. The plane was his own Douglas DC-3, which had a history of mechanical problems. All seven passengers, including Blair, died. Only the two pilots survived.
Nelson's funeral took place at the Church of the Hills, Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery, on January 6, 1986, and he was privately buried in the Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles. His estate was bequeathed to his children, and he did not provide for ex-wife Kris Nelson.
Ozzie Nelson was a Rutgers alumnus and keen on college education, but eighteen-year-old Ricky was already in the 93 percent income-tax bracket and saw no reason to attend. At age thirteen, Ricky was making over $100,000 per annum, and at sixteen he had a personal fortune of $500,000. (equivalent to $4,777,904.41 in 2020 dollar value).
Currently, Ricky Nelson is 81 years, 5 months and 17 days old. Ricky Nelson will celebrate 82nd birthday on a Sunday 8th of May 2022.
Find out about Ricky Nelson birthday activities in timeline view here.